Sunday, May 31, 2015


fireflies ‘f antietam
out on th’grassy field, she asks
what’s left to be said


sailing ‘n th’chesapeake
behind those dunes she’s reading
‘bout how t’be happy

docked ‘t ego alley
th’buskers try t’raise some cash, ‘n’ th’child
salutes th’midshipmen

june rains, linc’cum line –
obese lass talks about th’wait,

watched mortar explode
on 'nam hillside - now th'harbor
fireworks make him jump

vet ‘n th’inner harbor
went t’nam, now even th’fireworks
make him grind his teeth

curses th’o’s traffic
th’radio reports th’acc’dent
near maryland house

baby copperheads –
t’ th’through hiker, th’maryland trail
holds his worst nightmare

visionary’s art –
th’intense joy’f th’harbor summer
through th’prism ‘f th’confined

outside gaithersburg,
looking f’r th’westbound train, but stopped
at ‘n ancient farmhouse

wreck ‘n th’catonsville pike
trying t’find seventy west,
saw th’steamy city

sailing chesapeake shore
cabins' shutters closing
in sun's reflection

slurps th’crab off his thumbs –
from th’eastern shore, makes th’big point
‘f eating’m in season

up from th’eastern shore,
‘n’ lost his wallet ‘t camden yards
wouldn’t norm’ly beg

woke up t’ th’copperheads –
a-t hiker tells ‘bout th’night
on th’maryland trail

assateague salt marsh -
trav'ler seeks respite from heat,
clapper rails still hunt

salt marsh clapper rails –
th’tourists’re in assateague, but they
go ‘bout their business

one night, mar’land trail,
through-hiker’s nightmare comes true –
whole nest ‘f copperheads

from th’pickup bed, watch
cowboys change drivers without
stopping – chesapeake bridge

camden yards gambler -
decades of wins and losses
betting on the o's

harper's ferry, now
antietam - firefly, how much
hist'ry do you know?

smell of fresh crab cakes,
eye on harbor tourguides
and the pickpockets

woods near arundel,
unwraps rich cheese, loaf and jug
misses home, boulogne

south mountain: the trail,
or th'road t'denver - sets down th'pack,
and flips a quarter

cut west ‘n hagerstown,
or stay with her, ‘n’ watch th’leaves turn
in th’small college town

nanjemoy egret,
th’leaves changing around his stage,
‘n’ his regal d’cision

hustling th’ravens game
used t’play music, but th’streaming
‘bout killed th’industry

wore th’hijab t’th’harbor
sharp words, cold winds, ‘n’ th’struggle t’be
openly muslim

ravens’ nineteenth pick –
watchin’ th’game from th’towson couch
getting’ drunk ‘n’ vi’lent

high hopes ‘t th’wedding –
th’whole raven team, her fam’ly,
cruciate ligament

th’inner harbor shines –
game day, ‘n’ she can’t stand th’ravens,
can’t bear it t’go home

long walk down howard,
cold bus stop, sidelong glances –
they, too, far from home

has th’right t’walk quickly
down howard – they watch his breath,
‘n’ he mumbles ‘bout drugs


clogging up th’system –
first frost, ‘n’ th’city workers have t’take
th’fatberg from th’sewer

saints' day - poe and ruth?
visionary museum's
here in the harbor

nanjemoy eagle
in talons a trout that saw
fall colors, last time

‘they should just get jobs,’
th’old man says, but ‘s christmas time
‘n sandtown-winchester

sandtown winchester
first snows ‘f christmas settle in,
sense ‘f desperation spreads

harbor tunnel slows
t'a crawl - maine t' georgia trip stops
as th'east coast counts down

stuck ‘n th’harbor tunnel
traffic’s not moving, ‘n’ the east coast
starting its countdown

countdown ‘n baltimore
hotelier’s nervous, some guy’s
arsenal’s on th’roof

epiphany feast
awaits, but traffic's backed up
since maryland house

between steel bridge and
harbor tunnel, truck jackknifed -
miles back, snow tests brakes

from th’visionary,
th’icy walk t’ th’inner harbor –
what are th’gulls saying?

icy glazed harbor,
late night at th'visionary -
crab cakes for breakfast

ice ‘t th’poe memorial
too worried about th’danger
t’think about th’guy’s life

justice f’r mister poe –
in life, th’maudlin verse, in death,
th’icy grave on greene

bal'more has drum gigs
but's hard to pay the gas bill
'round 'bout febr'ary

inner harbor march
scarf ‘n’ hat ‘gainst th’wind, guy mumbles
something ‘bout cocaine

th’old priest on dubois
th’sailor hides from th’april rains,
gives him th’sack of jewels

down on th’eastern shore,
mallets, crabs, th’start of th’season
he loves th’sounds of home

sea breeze, spring morning -
th'ocean city bartender
jams door with driftwood

he’d give you th’driftwood
but he found it ‘n assateague,
‘n’ he needs it t’hold th’door


spring ‘t th’metro station –
happened t’come, says th’musician
cause ‘t’s called shady grove

likes th’black eyed susans -
they survive th’chesapeake rains,
‘n’ still come back cheerful


field ‘f black-eyed susans
th’train pushes west ‘n hagerstown,
‘n’ he’ll miss her dearly

oysters ‘n’ tobacco –
may fog, charles county lad’s tales
‘f th’way it’s always been

brown ‘n’ orange, th’orioles
shirts ‘n’ hats fill th’inner harbor –
hope for th’new season

maryland death fest –
even among th’blooming flow’rs,
hundreds ‘f black skull shirts

nanjemoy creek dawn -
egret hesitates, decides
to stay for summer

washington county
spring rains, ‘n’ they’re hauling off th’perp
f’r using th’online tools

spring ‘n ocean city
he’ll stay f’r another season
but wants t’throw th’driftwood

fireflies ‘t antietam
any possibility
th’souls’re still among us?

e pluribus haiku


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